Politics & Policies

This category contains 668 posts

Federal Minimum Wage in US – This week marks the seven-year anniversary of the last time it was raised

This week marks the seven-year anniversary of the last time the federal minimum wage was raised, from $6.55 to $7.25 on July 24, 2009. Since then, the purchasing power of the federal minimum wage has fallen by 10 percent as inflation has slowly eroded its value. However, this decline in the buying power of the … Continue reading

Latin America – Active labour market policies are needed to protect social achievements and address productivity gaps

At a time when governments in the region face the dual challenges of creating quality jobs and safeguarding achievements in social inclusion and work quality, an ILO report highlights the need for a new approach based on active labour market policies to address the current economic slowdown. A functional system of ALMPs in the region, … Continue reading

After Brexit Vote – The debate in other EU member states about the future of the institution may just be getting started.

A majority of the Greeks (68%) and pluralities of the Dutch (44%), Germans (43%), Italians (39%) and French (39%) all want some EU power returned to their national governments. Both the Dutch and the French have a history of holding referendums on major and not-so-major issues, and Euroskeptic parties in both countries have already voiced … Continue reading

Occupational Licensing in US – Who they are and the effects on wages and unemployment

Who is licensed? Using the newly released Bureau of Labor Statistics data, it is possible to describe licensed workers and then examine a number of important economic implications of licensing. Licensing varies substantially by occupation. Legal, education, and healthcare occupations feature licensing at particularly high rates, as shown in Figure 1. Note that the increase … Continue reading

Paid Vacation Time around the World (Infographic)

As summer approaches, many of us have vacation on our minds. We’re ready to get out of the office and head towards a tropical location with our family or friends. Though the thought of getting away is exciting, it’s also stressful to think about all the work (and possibly pay) we’re leaving behind. Did you … Continue reading

Refugee in Germany – 100,000 new “working opportunities”

Last week, Germany’s legislature debated a new law on integration, the country’s first. It requires asylum seekers to take lessons in language, culture and values in exchange for faster access to the labor market. The government has promised to subsidize 100,000 new “working opportunities,” many of them low-paid workfare jobs. Labor laws will be relaxed … Continue reading

Pathways to Employment – There are multiple strategies local and regional leaders can use

Employment is down among everyone between the ages of 16 and 64—particularly among teens, but with a great deal of variation by geography, race, and education. The disparity between blacks and whites is especially stark. For example, unemployment among white young adults peaked at 14% in 2010—still considerably lower than unemployment rates for black young … Continue reading

Entrepreneurship and Job Creation – Predicting which firms will fail and which will succeed is nearly impossible

New firms account for a disproportionate share of aggregate job creation in advanced economies. Yet most firms fail, and it is immensely difficult to predict which firms will succeed. Policymakers can set the right conditions so that capital and other resources flow to firms with high growth potential, even if this implies initially supporting firms … Continue reading

Guaranteed Basic Income in Switzerland – 77% reject it

Swiss voters rejected by a wide margin on Sunday a proposal to introduce a guaranteed basic income for everyone living in the wealthy country after an uneasy debate about the future of work at a time of increasing automation. Supporters had said introducing a monthly income of 2,500 Swiss francs ($2,563) per adult and 625 … Continue reading

Higher Education – How much do students pay and the public support they receive

OECD countries differ significantly in the way spending on tertiary education is shared between public and private sources of funding, and in the financial support they provide to students. Countries with high tuition fees tend to also be those where private entities other than households make a more significant contribution to funding tertiary institutions. By … Continue reading

Minimum Wage – Any evidence of a negative employment effect is not robust

There is a huge body of empirical research on the employment effect of the minimum wage that has failed to clearly demonstrate the negative effect that so many economists strongly believe to find. This paper reviews the reasons for this and argues that the literature needs to re-focus to further our knowledge on the topic. … Continue reading

Career Education in Atlantic Canada – A report submitted to the Council of Atlantic Ministers of Education and Training

Canada’s youth unemployment continues to be disproportionately elevated, our student summer jobless rate has hit the highest level since data has been collected and our youth underemployment rates are the second highest among OECD countries as far too many young adults are caught in precarious, non-permanent jobs that are not commensurate with their education. The … Continue reading

Public Employment Service (PES) in Colombia – Increases the probability of having a formal job

Active labour market policies (ALMPs) have gained increasing importance in Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC) since the beginning of the 2000s as helpful policy instruments to sustain productive employment. This reflects a policy shift by governments in the region to complement traditional interventions aimed at poverty reduction (such as conditional cash transfers, CCTs), with … Continue reading

Public Employment Service in Korea – A tendency to add new functions without reducing its current functions

The Job Centre faces some difficulties and challenges. Firstly, there has been controversy over the relationship between the Job Centre and other PES organizations. This includes the issue of the linkage between employment and welfare services. Secondly, staffing problems are embedded in the Job Centre due to the tensions and conflicts among staff caused by … Continue reading

Basic Income in Canada – The story of Manitoba’s Mincome trial (from 1975 to 1979)

Manitoba’s Mincome trial, which ran from 1975 to 1979, is being spoken of respectfully now because guaranteed income has so rarely been tested in a thoughtful way. Mincome was designed consciously as an experiment, applied in two theatres. In the city of Winnipeg, 1,187 households were randomly chosen to receive a “negative income tax,” and … Continue reading

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